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International Events in Penang

There is a long list of international events in Penang being held annually. Sports, arts and culture are the main themes.

The main exhibition hall at PISA

As of cultural related events, non-Malaysian celebrations are organized too, like the Japanese Bon Ondori festivals which is held at the Esplanade (Padang Kota Lama) each July.

Thai water festival also has its own version in Penang as there is a large number of Siamese community in this state. Do not be surprised that October Fest is also celebrated here by beer-loving Germans and the locals.

To host these events, Penang has a number of international standard venues.

One of them is PISA (Penang International Sports and Aquatic Arena). PISA has an Olympic sized swimming pool together with a deep pool, perfect for diving and synchronized swimming.

The pool is used by many clubs to train their swimmers and divers for competitions.

Another part of the complex has exhibition halls, perfect for trade shows, concerts (indoor or outdoor) or a massive rally. There is also space for rent for badminton games and futsal.

Teluk Bahang reservoir
Teluk Bahang Reservoir is perfect
for dragon boat race

It is for nothing that Tourism Malaysia touts Penang as the perfect venue to hold MICE (meeting, incentive, competition/convention and exhibition). International events in Penang are a breeze to organize.

Hotels and guest houses in Penang are accustomed to serving many kinds of travelers and businessmen. The hospitality industry is packed with well trained staff who know exactly what they should do to ensure your events run smoothly and your stay hassle-free.

Penang also makes full use of its natural or manmade locales for the venues of international events in Penang.

For example, the Penang Bridge International Marathon crosses the Penang Bridge, BASE jumping show takes off from the top of KOMTAR tower and the international skim boarding competition is held at the beach of Tanjung Bungah to an enthusiastic crowd.

The annual international dragon boat races initially were held at the Gurney Drive, Mengkuang Dam and later on the Teluk Bahang water reservoir.

Main field at USM
Heritage buildings face the main field at USM

In December 2008, the dragon boat race was scheduled for the first time at the channel between Pulau Jerejak and the big island, at Queensbay. However, due to some reason, it was still held at Teluk Bahang Dam and in its place a fishing competition was held instead at Queesbay.

University Sains Malaysia (USM) is also no stranger for international level cricket and hockey tournaments. The campus has one of the best sports facilities in the country. The football, cricket and rugby pitches are located right on its main entrance.

USM olympic sized pool football 	pitch at  USM
The Olympic sized pool and the football (soccer) pitch at USM

Rows of tennis courts, an Astroturf field for hockey and a stadium with synthetic track are located on the other side of the campus. There is also an Olympic sized swimming pool built on the slope of a picturesque setting. Even archery and a mini golf putting green are available. You name it, USM has it. USM is also dubbed as being the most scenic university in Malaysia.

Besides the events mentioned above, there are many others which hardly made the news because the target group is relatively small. Events calendars are usually published semi-annually in advance by Penang Tourism Act Council. You may also see past years event calendars as comparison.

At any rate, organizers will be spoilt for choice when they consider holding international events in Penang. The status of George Town as one of UNESCO's heritage cities of the world makes it even more so.

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